I love watching the Miss America pageant. I look at the pictures ahead of time and pick who I think will win, and I have correctly named three of the last five winners. Brett won this year (oooops, I just outed him for watching with me).
I love the glamor of the evening gowns, the ridiculously high heels and the anticipation that someone will say something truly dreadful in the interview round (please click on that, please please please). Anyway, it’s decent Saturday night entertainment.
But the messages I noticed this year were not so entertaining. In a pre-taped interview, Miss California said, “The job of Miss America is to be sexy and inspire young girls.” Seriously? Please keep Miss California away from my kid.
Then one of the co-hosts said on stage, “These women will go on to become successful in the most important careers – lawyers, doctors, maybe president! They will really make a difference in our future.” That’s nice, but guess what, there isn’t going to be much of a future unless some of these ladies become mothers.
Oh wait, that’s not cool. That’s not glamorous.
I know the Miss America pageant has been criticized in the past for supposedly sending the message to girls that beauty is all that matters. I’d like to complain that the current message seems to be that career success (preferably in a high-profile job with a big paycheck) is all that matters.
This isn’t a new message, and maybe it doesn’t matter because I forecast that more of those women on stage will become mothers than doctors, but it would just be nice to hear someone say on TV, “These women will really make a difference in the world – they’ll become doctors, teachers and moms!”